"If you are walking in Charleston, you are walking on someone's grave."--Sue Bennett, Charleston tour guide

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Family Ancestor Research Project- Due Oct. 3

Citadel Graduate John Weeks

Family Ancestor Article/Blog Post
“Beyond the Grave” Course/Fall 2016
Proposal/Outline Due: Monday, Sept. 26
Post Due: Monday, Oct. 3 (you will present post)

Personal Ancestor Research and Writing Project
The assignment is to research and write about an ancestor of yours- a great grandparent or older. You can do a husband and wife together or one or the other. It is up to you. Talk to your parents and grandparents to see who might be a good candidate for this piece. If your ancestor had a particularly interesting life and life experiences, he or she could be a good choice. Maybe there is something noteworthy about where and how your ancestor was buried, maybe something about the grave marker that would tie in with some of the themes of this class. Try to identify the type of grave marker your ancestor has, such as headstone, grass (flush or lawn) marker, ledger, die on socket, etc.

Next Monday you will turn in a typed paper with your idea and subject for this project. Name the ancestor(s), state when he/she/they lived and where, cause of death and at what age, where he/she/they are buried, what kind of cemetery it is (refer to our course material for the types of cemeteries there are), and give two or three interesting things about your subject’s life.

Also, list how you will go about researching this person- who you will talk to and what resources you will examine to find out details about your ancestor’s life. Think about and include what visuals you think you will have with your article/post: photos of your subject, maybe a photo of where he/she lived and worked, and an image of his/her grave site. If your person was buried in your hometown, perhaps you can have your parents take a photo for you. Use ancestry.com (available free at the Charleston County Library on Calhoun Street) and findagrave.com website to find your ancestor. If there are any famous or notable people buried in your ancestor’s cemetery/graveyard, be sure to include that in your story.

If you need to change your topic after submitting the outline paper, please let me know.

In the classes ahead we will look at various sources you can use to find out things about your ancestor. Your writing should be in the style of the stories in my book “In the Arms of Angels” about people buried in Magnolia Cemetery. Review all or at least several of the pieces in Chapters 1-4 to get a sense of storytelling, anecdotes, and use of and attribution for various resources from which information was found. Linking your online sources is suggested.

Your posted article should be at least 300-400 words, have at least two or three photographs/images, and have at least two links to related material, websites, online articles/resources, the cemetery where your ancestor is interred, etc. Include quotes from your parents and grandparents if possible.

Each of you on the due date will present and discuss your ancestor research and blog post.. 

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